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Intel delays cheap hi-def TV tech

Liquid-crystal-on-silicon chips need more refinement

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Intel has put back the release of its 'high-definition TVs for the rest of us' display technology.

The system, dubbed 'liquid crystal on silicon' (LCOS), involves placing thousands of tiny LCD cells on a silicon wafer. Light shined onto the wafer is reflected (or not) depending on the state of each cell. The reflected light is magnified and projected onto a screen.

Intel made its LCOS efforts public last January at the US Consumer Electronics Show. It also demoed the impressive technology at its own Intel Developer Forum last February.

The chip giant sees LCOS as an inexpensive alternative to technologies like Texas Instruments' Digital Light Processing system. DLP uses computer-controlled mirrors to reflect light onto the screen, and it's expensive to produce.

The LCOS delay, reported by Bloomberg, which cited an Intel spokeswoman, suggest the chipmaker hasn't got it quite right yet - at least not sufficiently right to release in H2 2004, which was its original schedule. It's holding back the chip to make improvement, the spokeswoman said. ®

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